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Eumeces algeriensis PETERS, 1864

IUCN Red List - Eumeces algeriensis - Least Concern, LC

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Higher TaxaScincidae, Scincinae, Scincoidea, Sauria, Squamata (lizards)
SubspeciesEumeces algeriensis algeriensis PETERS 1864
Eumeces algeriensis meridionalis DOMERGUE 1901 
Common NamesE: Algerian Skink
G: Berberskink, Algerienskink 
SynonymEumeces pavimentatus var. algeriensis PETERS 1864: 49
Scincus cyprius CUVIER 1816 (fide BOULENGER 1891)
Scincus cyprius — GERVAIS 1836: 309
Eumeces pavimentatus — BÖTTGER 1874
Eumeces algeriensis — BOULENGER 1887
Eumeces algeriensis — TAYLOR 1936: 146
Eumeces pavimentatus — TAYLOR 1936: 133
Eumeces schneideri algeriensis — EISELT 1940
Eumeces algeriensis — CAPUTO et al. 1993
Eumeces algeriensis — SCHLEICH, KÄSTLE & KABISCH 1996: 349
Novoeumeces algeriensis — GRIFFITH, NGO & MURPHY 2000
Novoeumeces pavimentatus — GRIFFITH, NGO & MURPHY 2000
Eumeces algeriensis — BONETTI 2002: 156
Eumeces algeriensis — SCHMITZ et al. 2004

Eumeces algeriensis meridionalis DOUMERGUE 1901
Eumeces algeriensis var. meridionalis DOMERGUE 1901: 214
Eumeces algeriensis meridionalis — WERNER 1929: 11
Eumeces schneideri meridionalis — DAREVSKY 1981: 360
Eumeces algeriensis meridionalis — SINDACO & JEREMČENKO 2008 
DistributionMorocco, Algeria (below 1700 m elevation).

Type locality: Algeria (by implication)

meridionalis: E Morocco, NW Algeria  
TypesSyntypes: ZMB 1258-60
Lectotype: unlocated, from Ain Sefra, collected by Hiroux (juvenile specimen of the five listed by Doumergue). Designated by Taylor (1936) [meridionalis] 
DiagnosisDiagnosis: A very large member of the Schneideri group, lacking evidence of longitudinal lines. A series of irregular transverse light bands alternating with similar ocellated bands (reddish in life) on a brown ground color. Four pairs of nuchals; eight or nine upper labials, five or six preceding the subocular labial; pre- and postsubocular series continuous; upper scales on lower eyelid not or only slightly enlarged; an area of granular juxtaposed seales following the insertion of hind leg, forming a pocket-like depression when leg is folded back; median dorsal scales wider than adjoining scale rows; 28-32 rows about middle of body, the seales more or less keeled; median preanals overlap smaller outer preanal seales; nostril above suture of first labial and rostral; mental with smaller labial border than rostral; two postmentals; no postnasal; limbs touch or are slightly separated when adpressed.” (Taylor 1936)

Description of species. “Portion of rostral visible above very large, separating the nasals by a relatively narrow distance, and not extending farther back than highest point of nasals; supranasals placed diagonally, forming a median suture; frontonasal relatively small, a little wider than long, in contact laterally with the anterior loreal, not or but slightly larger than a prefrontal; prefrontals forming a broad median suture, and sutures with the frontal, frontonasal, posterior loreal, anterior loreal, first superciliary, and first supraocular, their length in the order named; frontal not or scarcely angular anteriorly, the sides somewhat concave posteriorly, touching three supraoculars; frontoparietals quadrangular, forming a median suture; interparietal short, truncate posteriorly; parietals rather transversely placed, wider than long, not in contact behind interparietal; four (or five) pairs of nuchals (in one specimen the posterior part of the left parietal segmented and a small intercalated scale between the first pair of nuchals). Nasal large, divided by two grooves, one running from nostril to supranasal and another to the rostral, wedged between the rostral and first labial, in contact with the second labial; anterior loreal little higher than posterior loreal; latter as high as long; the presuboculars and postsuboculars forming a continuous series; four supraoculars; six superciliaries, the anterior and posterior large, approaching the first supraocular in size; primary temporal large (divided on left side in one); upper secondary quadrangular, not aS large as the lower secondary temporal, which forms 3 broad suture with the anterior; tertiary temporal present, single (or divided into two parts on left side); nine (or eight) upper labials, the first much the smallest, its suture with the rostral less than half the height of the seale, separated from the anterior loreal; seven or eight lower labials; last large labial followed by a pair of large postlabials. the lower of the two much the larger, and might be mistaken for one of the labial series; these followed by four vertical rows of scales diminishing in size as the ear is approached; four well-defined ear lobules, more or less rounded behind; mental small, the labial border much less than that of the rostral; two post-mentals, the posterior much the larger, and (abnormally) partially fused with the first pair of chinshields; three pairs of chinshields, all separated, third followed by a short and broad postgenial; this latter followed by a second, more elongated scale. Upper eyelid well-developed, the upper palpebral scales separated from the superciliaries by four or five rows of granules; scales bordering the lower palpebral scales not or only slightly enlarged, separated from the suboeular by six or seven rows of granules and the subocular series; ear surrounded by about twenty scales. Scales on the body in longitudinal rows, the median series distinctly widened; about 70 scales from occiput to above anus; 38 scales about neck behind ear: 33 about constricted portion of neck; 45 about body at axillary region; 30 about the middle of body; 24 about base of tail; dorsal, and ventral scales to a lesser extent, wrinkled or keeled; head scales somewhat rugose.” (Taylor 1936)
Limbs well-developed. Twenty-eight scales about the insertion of forearm; scales in axillary region granular; wrist without a well-defined tubercle, this area being covered with four scales of equal size; scales of forearm merge gradually into the rounded flattened tubercles of palm, which are subequal over much of the surface; lamellar formula of fingers: 6; 10; 12; 13; 8. Fingers with an intercalated series of scales on outer side (except fifth, on inner side); the terminal lamellae not tightly bound about the claws; about 34 scales around the insertion of the hind leg, an area of small granular scales forming a shallow poeket behind insertion; toes with an intercalated series of scales on outer side. Lamellar formula of toes: 7; 11; 13; 14; 9; scales of leg gradually merge into the rounded flattened tubercles of heel and sole, which gradually become smaller and more imbricating toward the base of the median toes.
Six preanal scales, the median pair much enlarged, overlapping the adjoining scale, which in turn overlaps the very small, scarcely differentiated outermost scale; lateral postanal scale differentiated noticeably, its surfaces raised and rounded; subcaudal scales much widened (normally about 34 scales).
Head much widened posteriorly.” (Taylor 1936)

Color (in alcohol). Above, brown to tan; the head generally more orange-brown on anterior part; beginning on shoulder the body is traversed by irregular light bands about one scale wide, separated by three scale rows, but growing wider low on sides; the median of these three rows bears A transverse band of somewhat ocellated spots. Rostral, nasal and anterior labials light. A light cream spot on seventh and eighth labials, another anterior to ear; two or three vertical spots of cream on side of neck, the anterior partially involving the ear; limbs and tail of a lighter tan than body; all ventral surfaces dull cream.” (Taylor 1936)

Variation. The largest specimen examined measures 207 mm. snout to vent (locality uncertain; A.N.S.P. No. 9386). The number of subcaudals varies from 83 to 86 in the specimens with perfect tail, 85 in one with the extreme tip regenerated. The parietals are inclosed in none. In ten specimens, the scales from parietals to above anus vary between 66 and 71, the number 66 occurring twice, 67 four times, 68 once, 69 once, 70 once, and 71 once. The scale rows on neck varv from 29 to 33, the average being about 31; scale rows about the middle of the body 28 to 30, 28 occurring twice, 29 once, and 30 seven times. Scales about base of tail vary from 20 to 26. The labials are usually 8-8, the number 9-9 occurring twice, and 8-9 once. The nuchals are usually 5-5, 5-4 occurring three times and 4-4 once. Invariably two postmentals and no postnasals occur. Superciliaries five to seven, the usual number being 5-5; 7-7 occurs twice. There are either four or three car lobules, three being a little more frequent. The frontonasal is never in contact with the frontal. Subdigital lamellae under fourth toe eleven to fourteen, 11 occurring twice, 12 five times, 13 five times and 14 seven times. The primary temporal tends to divide, this condition being present in five specimens.” (Taylor 1936) 
CommentSynonymy: The status of meridionalis is still unclear (A. SCHMITZ, pers. comm.). 
EtymologyNamed after the type locality. 
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